The Seneca Falls Town Board met in a special meeting on Monday at 4 pm to address the recently-vacated seats left by Chad Sanderson and James Ricci. The board also addressed the steps they would be taking in the coming weeks to fill those vacated seats.
The short meeting was set to address the process by which a replacement would be named. Attorney Patrick Morrell highlighted the rules, which left the decision with the board.
Morrell pointed out that he has represented other communities that have treated it like a job application process. However, he also noted that the initial proposal would have to be unanimously decided on, which would mean a 3-0 vote across the board.
The rules highlighted during the meeting included:
– Requiring three votes, or in the case of the current board — a unanimous vote — to carry any motion in a meeting. This includes any prospective additions to the board in the future.
– Any prospective member up for consideration on the board must be eligible to vote in the Town of Seneca Falls. That means they would need to live in the Town of Seneca Falls.
– The Seneca Falls board will move through this process as a group.
The board did vote on a series of dates, for deadlines, consideration, and voting on potential board members. The deadline for those looking to be considered must have their interest expressed to Nicki Greer, the Seneca Falls Town Clerk by Noon, on March 15th.
The board will then convene in a special meeting on March 16th at 4 pm to discuss the individuals in executive session. At that point, the board will consider all applicants until March 19th when they will make an official decision. That meeting will be held at 10 am on Saturday, March 19th.
The appointed positions though will only last through the end of this year. In November a special election will be held, where a more traditional process will take place. At that point, it will also be an open election, where anyone who is interested can run — following traditional voting rules.
The terms that are elected this year will fill the remainder of the two vacancies. In Ricci’s case, it will be a two-year term at that point — and in Sanderson’s case it will be a one-year term.
Speaking to the potential challenges that a board like this could face — needing a unanimous decision — Greg Lazzaro told FingerLakes1.com that he remains “confident that consensus will be reached with the appointments.”
Check back with FingerLakes1.com for more information as this continues to develop in the coming weeks.